A woman pictured in a hospital bed. BIA-ALCL lawsuits are on the rise.

Breast Implant Lymphoma Leads to Litigation – BIA-ALCL Lawsuits

BIA-ALCL lawsuits — What is BIA-ALCL?

BIA-ALCL stands for “breast implant associated anaplastic large cell lymphoma”, a disease that sometimes develops in women who have breast implants. Lymphoma is a type of cancer that affects lymphocyte cells, a key part of the body’s immune system. The symptoms of BIA-ALCL include pain, redness and swelling in the breast tissue.  BIA-ALCL lawsuits are on the rise, with injured victims alleging that they had no warning of the dangers and risks of the breast implants.

How common is BIA-ALCL?

In February 2019, the FDA reported that breast-implant-related lymphoma is on the rise.  573 women have been diagnosed with BIA-ALCL, and the disease has killed 35 women to date.  David Randolph Smith & Associates currently represents the family of one of these women, whose unfortunate death is confirmed to be the 34th in the world.

What causes BIA-ALCL?

The cause of BIA-ALCL is not yet known. However, a recently-released letter from the FDA states that the cancerous cells of BIA-ALCL are thought to develop from scar tissue surrounding the breast implants.  BIA-ALCL has been confirmed in textured implants only.  There are no confirmed cases involving smooth implants.  There is little to no known difference in the number of cases involving saline and silicone implants.  BIA-ALCL lawsuits are premised on several alleged defects with textured implants, from the manufacturing process to the failure to warn physicians and patients.

What treatment is available for victims of BIA-ALCL?

Treatment for BIA-ALCL involves chemotherapy and potential surgery. Most plans involve removing the breast implant and surrounding tissue, as well as undergoing rounds of radiation therapy. While these treatments have shown positive success rates, they are often expensive, painful, and time-consuming for the patient.

What are the BIA-ALCL lawsuits about?

According to drug-injury.com:

“Several BIA-ALCL lawsuits have already been filed this year on behalf of women who have been diagnosed with BIA-ALCL as a result of their breast implants.

In March of 2018, a woman filed [a BIA-ALCL lawsuit] against Allergan Inc.  The Plaintiff had her “Allergan Natrelle Silicone” breast implants for less than two years before her diagnosis.  Her treatment consisted of several revision and removal surgeries, then eventually chemotherapy and removal of her affected lymph nodes.

According to the Complaint, the “Plaintiff maintains that Defendants’ breast implants lacked proper warnings as to the dangers associated with their use.”  The BIA-ALCL lawsuit also alleges that the manufacturer of the breast implants failed to promptly and properly report the results of post-marketing studies that were required by the FDA.

A woman from Ohio alleges the same in her lawsuit against Mentor Worldwide, which was filed in April 2018 in New Jersey.  The Plaintiff in this case had the Mentor MemoryGel SILTEX breast implants for approximately eight years before her BIA-ALCL diagnosis.  As a result of her diagnosis, she required removal of the implants and six of her lymph nodes, as well as chemotherapy.”

If I or a loved one develop BIA-ALCL, what should I do?

Contact the Tennessee BIA-ALCL attorneys and personal injury lawyers at David Randolph Smith & Associates right away. We’ll hear the facts of your case and offer expert advice on what steps to take next,  and how to navigate your claim.  We have significant experience handling defective medical device lawsuits in Nashville and around the region.  We have performed extensive research on the origins and mechanism of BIA-ALCL.  We believe we have the legal expertise to defeat a complex legal doctrine known as “pre-emption” based on pre-market approval of the breast implants at issue in BIA-ALCL lawsuits. Contact us today.